Despite being set to lead a film this November with Phase Four's biggest star-studded ensemble, the Eternals have a fairly limited history in Marvel Comics. The super-powered group of immortal beings debuted in a 1976 comic series written by Jack Kirby which ran for two years, struggling to maintain much popularity.
The Eternals went on to return for a 12-issue mini-series under Peter B. Gillis in 1985, with the limited-run proving to be the last time the team would be seen in the 20th century. Aside from several minor one-off appearances, Marvel's god-like beings were next seen in another mini-series in 2006, written by legendary writer Neil Gaiman.
Gaiman's time with the team brought the relatively unknown Marvel heroes into the modern era in what is considered by many to be the best of the characters' comics series.
While the Eternals were previously yet to truly attract the attention of comic readers, the recent teaser trailer released for the upcoming film has brought interest in the group to an all-time high . With six months to go until the movie hits theaters, many fans are already praising director Chloe Zhao and the star-studded ensemble cast for creating something truly unique in the ever-expanding MCU.
However, it seems the fans aren't the only ones excited to see the team finally make their live-action debut in the Gemma Chan-led film as an Eternals comic writer has shared his feelings on the film, after watching the recent trailer.
NEIL GAIMAN DESCRIBES “SHIVERY” REACTION TO ETERNALS TRAILER
In a recent tweet, 2006 Marvel Comics Eternals writer Neil Gaiman described the “shivery” feelings he got while watching the recently released MCU Eternals trailer. The award-winning novelist went on to share his love for how the “fires that Jack Kirby lit” in creating the team have been “passed from creator to creator” through various interpretations over the characters over the last four decades.
Gaiman additionally revealed his gratitude to have “[gotten] to touch the flame Jack kindled,” and to “pass it on” to director Chloe Zhao and the writers currently working on the ongoing Eternals comic series that begun in January.
The full tweet can be seen below:
I watched this and got shivery at the way that the fires that Jack Kirby lit get passed from creator to creator, and keep burning. I'm glad I got to touch the flame Jack kindled, on the Eternals, and to pass it on. https://t.co/TL1GHVUTNt
SIMU LIU REACTS TO ETERNALS TRAILER WITH MCU REFERENCE
However, Gaiman clearly isn't the only one excited about Eternals as Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star Simu Liu has called the trailer a “masterpiece” in a nod to The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Disney+ series.
Liu's tweet makes clever reference to the recent Disney+ blockbuster in which Baron Zemo said to Bucky (James Barnes) regarding the music of Marvin Gaye:
“It is a masterpiece, James. Complete. Comprehensive.”
HOW MUCH WILL ETERNALS DRAW FROM MARVEL COMICS?
Prior to the announcement of the Eternals movie, even many of the biggest Marvel Comics fans had never heard of the team as they have largely been absent from the universe in recent years. While the immortal group has had several runs over time, they have never maintained a substantial presence in the way many other characters have, meaning the MCU has less to draw from for this film than any other cinematic debut yet.
The lacking of much source material leaves Oscar-winning director Chloe Zhao the opportunity to make these characters whoever she wants them to be, without needing to worry about upsetting too many fans. Based on previous comments, the blockbuster will seemingly draw mainly from Kirby's original run with the characters rather than Gaiman's, however, it's likely every piece of the team's history will have some influence over the film.
While many moviegoers and comic fans saw Eternals as a big risk for Marvel upon its original announcement, Disney has certainly shown it has faith in the movie Zhao is making given the enormous star power of the cast . The debut trailer seemed to hint towards a very different film from the usual MCU blueprint, although it's still sure to be packed with the usual superhero action that fans have come to expect.
Eternals will hit theaters on November 4, 2021.